Rahul, Rehmat, Ryan and Ranjit were friends. They would play together in the evening. One evening they had a childish argument over the subject of God. Rahul said, “My mummy says that Krishna is the greatest God.” Rehmat said, “That’s foolish, Allah is supreme.” Ranjit countered them all saying, “Guru Nanak is the only true Guru for He alone can guide us and guard us.” Ryan said, “You’re all wrong, Christ is the saviour.”
A lady was watching them argue. She called out to them. She asked, “Do you all study in the same school?” “Yes, all of us are in St. Johns” they replied in unison. “By which road do you reach there?” asked the lady. Rahul said, “I take the road from sector 9 to 8 and then 7. Sector 26 is adjacent to sector 7 and I reach school from there.”
Rehmat said, “I cross over the Madhya Marg from Sector 27 to 26 and then go straight into the school at the further end of sector 26.”
Ranjit said, “I live in sector 2, we take the lake road, then we drive through the dividing road of sector 6 and 7, till I reach the corner of sector 26 and I am there.”
Ryan said, “I live in Pinjore, it’s a long drive through Panchkula, we take the road behind the lake; it takes us about half an hour to reach school.”
The lady smiled, “So, each one of you, reaches the school by different roads. But, the destination is the same. So too God is also one, but we know Him by different names. The paths to reach Him are different. None of them is superior or more correct than the other. Regardless of the path you choose, as long as you get there, the route is of no consequence.” What is your route?
They listened spellbound as she continued, “Let me tell you about myself. My parents named me Preeti when I was a little girl. My children call me ‘Mummy’. All my friends nicknamed me ‘Pretty’. My husband loves to call me ‘Honey’. My nieces and nephews call me ‘Aunt Preeti’. Which name do you think is the most correct one for addressing me? Do you think my nephew should call me ‘Honey’?” The children listened with curiosity. She smiled and said, “All names are correct. None is wrong. So too it is with the names of the Lord. Krishna, Jesus, Allah, Guru Nanak, Buddha, all are addressed to the Supreme God Almighty, who is one and only one. You can address Him by any name you like. We in India are unique people because we respect and tolerate the religions of others; just as we respect the mothers of our friends as well as our own mother. This is the essence of Unity in Diversity. This is what makes India a secular state and this is what National Integration is all about!”
Baba says that only those who are ignorant of the glory of God, will insist on one name and one form for His adoration; and what is worse; condemn the use by others of other names and forms!